Butternut squash, Mozzarella, Slow-cooked Onions, Kale

I made pizza. Butternut squash, onion and mozzarella pizza. The kale I served separately. Butternut squash and kale pizza is popular but I was pretty sure it wouldn't be in my house. So, I kept the kale away from the pizza. Even so, they were sceptical. 'Pizza!' I proclaimed, 'yeah, but it isn't really is it?' They ate it all though.

I cooked a load of onions, 4 or 5 I think, slowly in butter until sweet and delicious.
I peeled and diced the squash, tossed it in a little olive oil and roasted it in a hot oven long enough for the squash to become soft and begin to char around the edges slightly - about 20 -30 minutes.
I made some pizza dough using 500g of strong white flour, 1 teaspoon of easy-blend yeast, 1 teaspoon of salt, a tablespoon of olive oil and about 300ml of warm water.
When the dough had risen I divided in two and rolled it thinly to fit my pizza trays. These are about 30cm in diameter.
I topped the pizzas with the onions, the squash, a little leftover grated parmesan and one ball of torn mozzarella per pizza. I sprinkled them with sea salt and baked at 230°c (210°c fan oven ) for 20 minutes.

And then I massaged the kale.

Massaging kale is a perfectly normal thing to do. It is really. See it's all over Pinterest. What you do is tear it into bite-sized pieces, put it in a bowl, add a little olive oil and some lemon juice plus some salt and massage the oil and lemon into the kale for 3 or 4 minutes. This is a pleasant soothing task. As you massage the kale it loses its healthier than thou worthiness and becomes pliant and sweet. The kale is seduced.
I added some toasted pecans and much to my surprise both Katie and Charlie ate large helpings. The boys were not persuaded. All in all a delicious meal and one which I will repeat.


You don't have to make pizza dough, you could use ready made pizza bases or other flatbreads, naan bread for example. Or, you could use ready made puff pastry and call it a tart and that way it will not only be delicious but you won't have people saying  'but it isn't really a pizza is it?'

Swap the mozzarella for blue cheese, add walnuts or pecans.
Swap the squash for sweet potato.
Add the kale to the pizza if you are feeding less fussy people than I am.
Add crumbled sausage or bacon.

Other Ideas

Cook some pasta, something like rigatoni or penne, mix it in a baking dish with the roasted squash, the cooked onion and lumps of mozzarella. Bake just long enough for the mozzarella to melt. Or forget the mozzarella and make cheese sauce using a well flavoured hard cheese and turn it into a fabulous macaroni cheese.

Steam or boil the squash instead of roasting it, mash it with an equal quantity of boiled potatoes. Layer it in a baking dish with the onions and mozzarella. Bake until the mozzarella melts.

Add some roast squash to the massaged kale, keep the nuts in for crunch. Try some crumbled feta or bacon too for salty contrast.



  1. Sounds delicious and I am not really a pizza fan normally! I had an open toastie - sourdough slice topped with squash, onion and blue cheese with walnuts recently and that was good too.

  2. I would become pliant and sweet if someone massaged me. Looks delicious...

  3. Delicious Sue! I would have added the kale to the pizza (less fussy here!), plus I'm not sure that I am a kale massaging type! If you added the kale to the pizza you would get some nice crispy bits too!! Love the blue cheese and walnut suggestion! xx

  4. This looks like a recipe we would enjoy Sue. Thanks for sharing. I love butternut squash and anything with onion has me at the get go!

  5. Sounds delicious and so healthy - I will certainly give your recipes a go as we love butternut squash.

  6. I will definitely be making these dishes thanks Sue. I can never get enough butternut, an all time favourite.

  7. Thank you for that yummy sounding recipe! Hubby and I have changed our eating habits and I have been looking for healthy recipes. This one is sure to be a favorite!

  8. I can just see the look on my husband's face if I told him I was massaging kale.

  9. That looks delicious. I'm going to give this a go, thanks.

  10. Added to my facienda - massage the kale. Life IS good ! :o)

  11. Sounds delicious, healthy, stylish, and fun.

  12. We cannot find kale over here... Such a pity as it looks yummy.

  13. Squash on a pizza is a great idea, and I just happen to have a few hanging in the garage. I keep forgetting they're there, I shall go and dig one out.

  14. Hahaha! Loving the massaging of the seduced kale!! So really what you have made is a FUSION, Sue dear, get it right, a fusion between pizza and quiche, a kind of Franco-Romano d├ętente. Wonderful, I love the sound of the filling. Lx

  15. massaging the kale? what an interesting proposition.... I had never heard of it before.....
    How do you find cooking with wet mozzarella? I tend to use dried one for pizzas/puff pastry things...
    Thanks for all these great ideas, Sue! Pati xx

    1. So do I Pati but I bought quite a lot of wet mozzarella recently because it was cheap -it freezes well. I find if you blot it with paper towels before tearing it up, and don't put too many other wet ingredients on your pizza then it doesn't make everything soggy.

  16. Sue, as I read this adventure of yours involving Kale, I kept reminding my self that you were the one who, via your colcannon kale variation, actually got me to purchase kale several times at the farmers market.

    Massaged kale as a side dish...a salad to accompany an interesting pizza, might be a bit too far for me to travel, even if the kale gets to meet up with pecans. it was the bacon that got me interested in that other dish.

    I do promise to think about trying this raw, massaged kale notion. If I do try it, I'll report back to you.


  17. When are you going to write a book? :)

  18. hail the mighty kale.
    Does this REALLY work - the massaging thing? Heard it all now. The pizza looks epic. See I'm down with the kids.....
    I agree with Barbara - if you put together a book, I'd buy it.

  19. Yummy, that looks like my kind of pizza! Would be great with a wholemeal base too. Best wishes, Pj x

  20. I love the sound of this pizza, lots of great food combos too, the massaging makes sense, many thanks, Niki

  21. Oh it looks gorgeous ... I love the idea of massaging kale ... I have some in the vegetable garden which is looking a little uptight ;) ... Bee x

  22. Just seen you post and earlier this evening I made a pizza with kale, bacon and tomato with a BBQ sauce - recipe from here - http://iowagirleats.com/2014/01/10/bbq-blt-pizza/ - it was really good. Don't think I massaged my kale long enough though but the hubby still declared it the best pizza he'd ever eaten.


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